tolmetin, Tolectin (Discontinued Brand)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

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What is tolmetin, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?

Tolmetin is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is effective in treating fever, pain, and inflammation in the body. It is similar to ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil), naproxen (Naprosyn), and others. As a group, NSAIDs are non-narcotic relievers of mild to moderate pain of many causes, including injury, menstrual cramps, arthritis, and other musculoskeletal conditions. They work by reducing the levels of prostaglandins, chemicals that are responsible for pain, fever, and inflammation. Tolmetin blocks the enzyme that makes prostaglandins (cyclooxygenase), resulting in lower concentrations of prostaglandins. As a consequence, inflammation, pain and fever are reduced. The FDA approved Tolectin in March 1976.

Is tolmetin available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

Do I need a prescription for tolmetin?

Yes

What are the side effects of tolmetin?

Most patients benefit from tolmetin and other NSAIDs with few side effects. However, serious side effects can occur, and generally tend to be dose related. Therefore, it is advisable to use the lowest effective dose to minimize side effects. The most common side effects of tolmetin involve the gastrointestinal system, and these include:

Tolmetin should be avoided by patients with a history of asthma, hives, or other allergic reactions to aspirin or other NSAIDs. Rare but severe allergic reactions have been reported in such individuals. It also should be avoided by patients with peptic ulcer disease or poor kidney function, since this medication can aggravate both conditions.

Other important side effects include:

  • heart attacks
  • strokes
  • accumulation of fluid, and
  • increased chance ofheart failure.

Tolmetin may cause or worsen high blood pressure and kidney failure.

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What is the dosage for tolmetin?

The recommended dose is 200-600 mg three times daily. The maximum daily dose is 1800 mg. Tolmetin should be taken with food and 8-12 ounces of water to avoid stomach upset.

Which drugs or supplements interact with tolmetin?

Tolmetin is generally used with caution in patients taking blood thinning medications (anticoagulants), such as warfarin (Coumadin), because of an increased risk of bleeding. Patients taking lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid) or methotrexate (Rheumatrex, Trexall) can develop toxic blood levels of either drug because tolmetin may inhibit their elimination from the body by the kidney. Side effects from cyclosporine also may be increased by tolmetin. Tolmetin may reduce the effectiveness of antihypertensives because it causes or worsens high blood pressure. NSAIDs may diminish the antihypertensive effect of ACE inhibitors.

Combining NSAIDs with angiotensin receptor blockers (for example, valsartan [Diovan], losartan [Cozaar], irbesartan [Avapro]) or angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (for example, enalapril [Vasotec], captopril [Capoten]) in patients who are elderly, volume-depleted (including those on diuretic therapy), or with poor kidney function may result in reduced kidney function, including kidney failure. These effects usually are reversible.

Persons who have more than three alcoholic beverages per day are at increased risk of developing stomach ulcers when taking tolmetin or other NSAIDs.

Is tolmetin safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?

Tolmetin is generally avoided during pregnancy.

Tolmetin is excreted in breast milk. To avoid adverse effects in the infant, nursing mothers should decide whether to stop nursing or stop tolmetin.

What else should I know about tolmetin?

What preparations of tolmetin are available?

Tablets or capsules: 200, 400, and 600 mg

How should I keep tolmetin stored?

Tolmetin should be stored at room temperature in a sealed container and protected from moisture.

Reference: FDA Prescribing Information

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Summary

tolmetin (Tolectin [Discontinued Brand]) is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) prescribed for the treatment of inflammation and pain that results from rheumatoid arthritis, juvenile arthritis, or osteoarthritis. Side effects, drug interactions, dosing, and pregnancy safety information should be reviewed prior to taking this medication.

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See more info: tolmetin on RxList
Reviewed on 7/27/2015
References
Reference: FDA Prescribing Information

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